Beauty businesses experience store closures and slow foot traffic amidst coronavirus

By: Sophia Hernandez | WCTV Eyewitness News
March 24, 2020

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) – As coronavirus concerns continue to sweep the nation, small local businesses are feeling the affects.

Those in the beauty industry, ranging from salons to barbershops, have been experiencing anything from slower foot traffic to store closures. Many in the Capital City say that they just hope to keep their doors open for as long as they can.

"It is really scary because you don't know if you close down will you be able to make rent, but if you close down you don't know if you go back into business, will you stay in business?" That is the uncertainty Yin Lam feels towards the future.

The owner of Nails La La says besides the hygiene measures like masks and gloves, the salon is holding no more than five clients and five employees at a time.

But even after implementing that, she says the calls have slowed down, and some customers have cancelled, "70% of our clientele are all gone, probably 90% of our clientele are college students so everyone is just gone."

On the other side of town, Metro Barber is experiencing a very similar slow-but-steady flow of clients. Barber Freddie Pappaceno shares, "People are always going to need their haircut and we are going to be here for them to get their haircut."

The usually full barbershop hopes that in the coming weeks, they will be seeing more clients. But Pappaceno says no matter what, they will continue to service their community, "I still have to make money and pay bills so I still come here to cut hair."

But other beauty businesses have decided to close their doors.

"It is better for us right now to stop the spreading of the virus," said Tyler Nguyen from Classic Nail Spa.

While the decision was not an easy one, Nguyen hopes that there are better days ahead, "It is really hard for them and we hope that everything clears out early as soon as possible and we get to open as soon as possible."

Classic Nail Spa hopes to be reopen by Thursday. If they do not believe for it to be safe to reopen, they will remain closed. Metro Barber and Nails La La have been taken the safety precautions necessary, and hope to continue to see customers.

Since Nails La La has downsized their services, they have decided to donate half of their supplies, specifically their gloves and masks to programs such as the Bond Health Community Center. They ask that other beauty businesses that do not have a demand for their products at this time, consider doing the same.